Film Genre

Genre represents a group of films which can be placed under a single category. The grouping can be done in many ways. They can be grouped on the basis of setting, theme, topic, mood, target audience or budget.

  • Setting: War film, western, space film, etc.
  • Theme: Science fiction, sports, crime, etc
  • Mood: Comedy, horror, tear jerker’s, etc
  • Target audience:  Children, teenagers, women’s films, etc.

The initial classification of films was mainly done from the literary point of view. It included classics, drama, comedy and similar literary classifications. Most Hollywood films do not fall into pure categories. They are generally hybrid and contain a combination of elements of different genres. Genres are mainly popular with critics and audience. People like to see a movie based on their emotional interests and choices. Genres are mainly used during advertisements to convey the kind of film it is. This is to attract people of a specific group. Genres also help when browsing in internet or libraries.

Some of the popular genres of films are given below.

  • Action Films As the title suggests these include lots of physical stunts, fights, chases, explosions etc. A typical example of this category is the James Bond film. Sub categories include disaster based films.
  • Adventure Films These movies are based on exciting adventures and visits to different locales. They also include the swash buckling pirate films, treasure hunts, expeditions etc.
  • Drama The main emphasis of these films is story, characters and life experiences and settings. They also include court room drama and biopic.
  • Epics and Historical Films These include period films. Importance is given to costumes, background and settings. Historical dramas and war films based on heroic figures is also popular.
  • Crime films They feature films on planned robberies and heist. Stories based on criminals and serial killers also are prominent. Detective based movies with the whodunit themes and courtroom dramas also figure in this genre.
  • Horrors Films which frighten and scare the viewer belong to this genre. Stories based on serial killers, lots of violence, monsters, Dracula, science fiction also belong to this class.
  • Comedy One of the most popular genres. This is a genre which is aimed to provoke laughter and amuse. The films have fairly simple plots and they are aimed at pure entertainment. They have subcategories of slapstick comedies, romantic comedies, black comedies and family movies.
  • Musicals They are dominated by song and dance sequence. Choreography and music is given a lot of emphasis. Sub genres of musical comedy are also common.
  • Science fiction Imaginative films based on futuristic inventions and space travel are popularly known as Sci-Fi. They generally have aliens, space monsters and people with innovative gadgets. Some Sci-Fi’s are also horror based.
  • War As the name suggests they are all based on wars. They may include the emotional drama of the characters in the background of war or the war itself. They may be based on true wars with fictitious characters.
  • Western This was a very popular genre once. Stories are based on early occupation of America and the struggles with the vast terrain, cowboys, red Indians, gunfights etc.